Mark Van Rijmenam at ‘REACH’: Big Data, Blockchain, and AI

Keynote speaker Mark Van Rijmenam

Keynote speaker Mark van Rijmenam rolled right into “the genius” of big data, blockchain, and artificial intelligence technologies during mid-day Thursday general session of REACH 2018 in Hollywood, CA—the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues’ annual convention.

Founder of Datafloq, a “top 10” big-data influencer, and founding partner of the Australian think-tank The Digital Leadership Initiative, van Rijmenam said that if credit union leaders want to innovate in today’s fast-changing rules environment they need to think differently. Select jobs in the economy will be “taken over” by mathematic algorithms, as they already are. The pace of change today is creating a more turbulent environment for the average business.

For example: “In the end, blockchain technology is nothing more than a document, but it is owned by several companies, customers, or organizations. Once you can share with each other, it changes everything. Organizations can get more collaborative. Everyone can see the same thing. Smart contracts, through blockchain, will always execute in the most efficient, effective manner.”

Blockchain—along with big data and artificial intelligence—will lead to collaboration between different industries.

“But how will it change your business?” asked van Rijmenam, who is also a faculty member of the Blockchain Research Institute and a strategic advisor to Cryptelo, Senno and Big Data Block. “Blockchain is decentralized, so we don’t get problems that come with centralization. You can control through an organization what kind of documents and information is being seen by everyone, and how they are seen.”

Afterward, the “Future Focus on Credit Unions” panel of experts gave insight on how big data, blockchain, and artificial intelligence is being used to change organizations. Since disruption is “a-moral,” these technologies can be used for good or bad depending on the people or organizations with access. They can be used “for the good” of society when in the right hands—and credit unions can play a role in serving their members by finding valuable and relevant uses.

Want a "recap" of REACH 2018? Visit the "REACH Onsite Live" news page! Also check out the REACH Social Wall—a round-up of social media posts. Or see Twitter (@CUatREACH). This year’s REACH 2018 conference—hosted by the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues from Nov. 6 – 9—was held at the Loews Hotel near Hollywood & Highland (in Hollywood, CA), a world-class entertainment destination. The annual REACH conference is a premier event drawing 700 – 800 credit union leaders and system partners from across the United States.

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